Canala Bay is the finest hurricane refuge for shipping on the northeast coast, and during the days of sail in the late 19th century this feature and mining activity made Canala an important center. Today it's Kanak country.
The turnoff for Ciu Falls is two km southeast of Canala, then it's another four km in to the falls themselves. There's great swimming at the top of the falls (free), and a sweeping view of Canala Bay.
At La Crouen, 11 km west of Canala, are thermal hot springs, where you can bathe in a 42°C sulfur pool. It's especially good for anyone suffering from arthritis, asthma, or rheumatism. Turn inland at a large bridge and follow the paved road one km to the Établissement Thermal. At last report, the main bathhouse was closed, but a small pool of thermal water beside the building was accessible anytime. A nice picnic spot overlooks the river and you could camp around here.
Farther west is the turnoff to the mining center of Kouaoua, 45 km northwest of Canala. From this junction, the main highway cuts south across the mountains to La Foa, passing tons of cascading water from several fantastic waterfalls along the way.
Continue to The Center: Around Sarraméa »